It’s fair to say that Yin&Yang has changed my life in many ways and all for the better (I hope!). I would like to think that our personal growth in our lives has been directly proportional to the growth and development of the site. One of the many things that has changed in our lives is our personal style. If I’m honest, I wouldn’t ever go back to wearing the matching sneakers/hoody/cap/tee look in the near future. It’s just not relevant anymore.
Why has it changed? Good question, there are a number of factors. Age is one, I’ve realised that style and perception go hand in hand over the past 18 months. Before I would dress to be ‘different’ and I felt comfortable to an extent. I did love dressing in the overly bright sneakers and the matching garments but also hated the attention I received at times.
For example, I was stopped at the tube station once by an officer who wanted to double check my oyster was legit. I am 100% sure if I was dressed the way I am now, I wouldn’t have been stopped that day. My look that day: red American Apparel hoody, baggy straight leg jeans tucked into my NikeID dunks. Did I mention the jeans were hanging off my arse as well? *embarrassed face*. forgive me, I believed this was ‘cool‘. Oh how little I knew, so young and foolish.
AWFUL haha. This was a month before Y&Y launched
If you want to see more photographs of the evolution of my personal style over the years, click here for an old post.
The next incident took place at Shoreditch House. It was the very first time we attended Wired. I was dressed in a red ‘Dappy’ hat, white clear spec wayfarers, bright red print tee with some funky typography and the matching sneakers to complete the look. Dope right? No, not if you’re standing out like an Oyinbo would in Nigeria. Google Oyinbo to find out what it means (shout outs to Pachel Rocks for teaching me that Yoruba term!). Everyone was dressed somewhat formal, smart casual I’d say and then you have me dressed like a ‘fresh kid‘. I felt totally uncomfortable till I consumed multiple units of alcohol, if I remember correctly we purchased 2 bottles of champagne that night. #gassed. See the thing I realised that night is I don’t like that kind of extra attention. It’s not necessary.
Wow. Mid 2009. I look like an Indian version of Elmer the Elephant with all those colours.
Most 30+ year olds would automatically stereotype me as the ‘ghetto/hood type’. Doesn’t matter if you’re wearing the dopest Air Jordans, print tee and snapback. You’re still seen as hood in their eyes, they can’t tell the difference. I’ve got nothing against Jordans or any of them. Just style it well so you don’t look ‘hood’.
On a side note, the way you carry yourself also influences younger peers – be wary of that. Yinfluence. Perfect example of this happened to me the other day when I went to shoot my little cousin for my final assignment and the first thing I noticed was my 11 year old dressed in a shirt, chinos and desert boots. The last time I had seen him, he was wearing a tracksuit. I thought he was going through the whole tracksuit wearing ghetto asian boy phase but no, he’s styling himself perfectly already! In fact, he asked me to buy him ‘brown leather shoes with dots‘….so I googled tan leather brogues and he said yes. I don’t even own a pair of those and he wants it. Sigh. #kidsthesedays
Actually came across a great quote on Twitter today. One of my friends tweeted it to me and it sums up this post:
Dress the way you would like to be addressed. – @SJMM29
Another one of my friends came up with us:
The way you dress leads the way to peoples interpretation of who you are and what you have to offer. – @iam_topher
Style matters, always. More on my personal growth soon.